For those following along at home, this (upcoming) week is spring break at King’s, which means the students are all off merrily relaxing/writing papers for the professors who are evil enough to assign them over this break. In my world, this means scrambling to finish a project that was delayed beyond my control and then heading off to Whidbey Island early Thursday morning for my second of five ten-day MFA residencies. In the sea of what has turned out to be a fantastically rewarding but also wildly stress-filled semester, ten days of school where I am the student sounds like a welcome relief (even if I fear I’ll end up grading on my free day): hanging out on a lovely, damp, green island discussing Shakespeare and craft and each others’ work with some of the finest folks on the planet? Yes, please.
Somewhat relatedly, I recommend to you this piece from the NY Times Magazine‘s blog: How to Write a ‘Lives’ Essay. It’s about how to write for their section entitled “Lives” (clearly), but every bit of it is apt advice for writers. (Most of it sounded like they’d eavesdropped on my College Writing 1 class. I know, I know: I’m so original.)
• Don’t try to fit your whole life into one “Lives.”
• Don’t try to tell the whole story.
• Do not end with the phrase “I realized that … ”
Oh, and the students at the school newspaper interviewed me, which is sort of fun. You can read the piece here.